Birth Place: Streanesheath
Born: 865 AD
It is not surprising that Sihtric the son of a freed Saxon slave known only as “Hrafn”, the raven, should quickly become known as “Hrafna”, the little raven. It should also be no surprise to learn that after the death of his parents, the “little raven” had to work hard to survive. All through his youth Sihtric could be found working, either at the bellows by the forge, repairing the fishermen’s nets, foraging in the woodland or any one of a dozen other menial tasks for a scrap of food or an occasional coin. His hard upbringing, however, taught him many skills which he used to earn a living from the war bands that call at the dock of the village where he lived. Re-stitching leather work, sharpening weapons or even repairing a mail shirt Sihtric was content until all he had was taken from him.
Two rival ships crews, a stolen jug of mead and a broken lantern turned a village tavern brawl into a pitched battle on a burning battlefield. Sihtric found himself between the two shield walls and thought his fate was sealed until the line of green shields with white boars opened and a man stepped out holding an axe in one hand and a drinking horn in the other.
“Here friend” he said “it’s good Mead, drink up” and thrust the horn into Sihtric's unresisting hands as the word “Mead” was repeated enthusiastically along the line.
“Come on, drink” the warrior repeated as strong hands pulled Sihtric in to the shield wall. The horn had barely touched his lips before it was snatched away and replaced with a shield in one hand and a spear in the other.
“That counts as payment brother” the bald headed and bearded warrior next to him said with a laugh, “welcome aboard”
“But I don’t know what to do” argued Sihtric
“Ah, it’s easy, keep the shields together, try not to get killed and stick ‘em with the pointy end…”